Turkey’s HDP calls for early elections

Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) challenged the ruling coalition to hold early elections in a public declaration on Wednesday.

The embattled opposition party’s co-chairs, Pervin Buldan and Sezai Temelli, said the two-party ruling coalition had lost its legitimacy and said the HDP would continue fighting despite severe legal pressures.

Twenty-four HDP mayors elected in local elections this year have been dismissed and replaced by government appointees. The ruling coalition, comprising the Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) and far-right Nationalist Movement Party (HDP), says the HDP mayors have links to outlawed Kurdish insurgent groups.

“The HDP, facing a systematic and multifaceted attack in all aspects of life, including local administrations, refuses to give up the fight in any area,” left-wing news site BirGün quoted the co-chairs as saying in a statement.

They said that the coalition government had lost its legitimacy in the March 31 local elections this year and the national elections last year, and accused it of resorting to authoritarian measures.

“We are calling on all parts of the opposition to unite in this call for early elections and take action,” the HDP leaders said.